Carbon Neutrality

Our industry is engaged in an important dialogue to improve sustainability through ESG transparency and industry collaboration. This article is a contribution to this larger conversation and does not necessarily reflect GRESB’s position. Please refer to official GRESB documents for assessment related guidance.

Achieving carbon neutrality has become increasingly important in recent decades due to global community concerns over climate change. The destructive impacts of emissions, particularly carbon dioxide (CO2), on climate change are widely accepted.

To reach carbon neutrality, the IPCC (International Panel on Climate Change) clearly outlines in its ‘Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C’ that it is now crucially important that a multi-pronged approach is adopted, based on the phasing out of fossil fuels, using renewable energy sources, improving energy efficiency for both supply and demand and introducing new clean technologies to eliminate the release of harmful emissions into the atmosphere. It goes without saying that the benefits of harnessing enormous volumes of data certainly cannot be overstated when it comes to setting and achieving emission reduction strategies. 

Data Collection & the Development of Emission Reduction Strategies 

Current approaches to limiting global average temperature rises have focused on encouraging companies to report and reduce emissions. Achieving carbon neutrality or even reaching a net-zero target is a complex task. 

Firstly, companies must clearly understand what operations and assets are included within its boundaries, as carbon neutrality targets should cover all material sources of GHG emissions within its value chain. From there, identifying what data currently exits and aggregating that data centrally will be crucially important for companies to optimise carbon neutral strategies. 

When it comes to monitoring and setting reduction targets, having quality data collated on a single platform can provide great insights into the multiple facets of a company’s carbon footprint. Technology is invaluable and instrumental in collecting data and developing emission reduction strategies as it advances a company’s efforts to pinpoint those environmental hotspots along the value chain, allowing for the organization to address its role in reducing carbon emissions.

Undoubtedly, tremendous efforts are necessary to achieve carbon neutrality such as decarbonizing energy supplies and accelerating the optimization of low emission innovations. Many key regions, sectors, and companies embrace the pathways to carbon neutralization and other related initiatives, paving the way towards a more sustainable future.

With material sources of emissions being clearly defined, quality data harnessed and a technological platform to aggregate and report said data on, companies are better positioned to employ corrective action and to set and achieve emissions targets in a way that yields concrete results.

This article was written by Rebecca Bennis, Implementation Project Manager at Accuvio